Bridgton, ME ( May 16, 2017) Jon Evans, Loon Echo Land Trust’s (LELT) Stewardship Manager and LELT’s Biologist, Paul Miller met with Jeremy Stultz, of Integrated Forest Management, on May 16, 2017 to discuss Raymond Community Forest’s draft Management Plan. As the planning continues for Maine’s newest community forest, the Management Plan is a required part of the Land for Maine's Future (LMF) funding. LMF funding helped pay a portion of the purchase of the 356 acre preserve.
With the recent forest cutting by the previous owner, Hancock Land Company, no forest management will occur during the 10 year life of the plan Loon Echo is developing.
According to Evans, Loon Echo’s management goals for Raymond Community Forest include habitat, recreation and timber management. The emphasis of the timber management portion of the plan focuses on wildlife habitat, and diversity of species and age classes. Long term plan focuses on developing late successional, otherwise known as old growth forest, on a portion of the preserve. Visual impact on the iconic Pismire Bluff is also included in the plan. The overall Management Plan for the 356 acre parcel calls for free public access for non-motorized recreation including: walking, hiking, bird watching, hunting and general enjoyment.
Loon Echo has already opened up the Forest with three new trails, including a trail to the cliff known as Pismire Bluff. A parking area on Conesca Road in Raymond was developed late in 2016 for the public to access the area. Loon Echo’s biologist, Paul Miller is developing interpretive educational signs along one of the newly constructed trails.
Loon Echo Land Trust, a membership supported organization, protects nearly 6,700 acres of land and manages 31 miles of multi-use trails in the northern Sebago Lake Region. Its mission is to work with the local residents to conserve the region’s natural resources and character for current and future generations. Loon Echo works within its service area to safeguard water quality, preserve viewsheds and provide outreach and fun educational programs for the public. Loon Echo assists landowners to take steps to ensure future generations will benefit from the preservation of their lands.
For information about upcoming events or ways you can support Loon Echo Land Trust, go www.lelt.org or call 207-647-4352.